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Full text of "A pocket guide book of historic Halifax, Nova Scotia, from the Citadel"

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MERGES 



MARI 

(wealth from the sea) 





ISTORIC 

HALIFAX 

NOVA SCOTIA 

FROM THE CITADEL 



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F1039 

.5.H17 

1949x 



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A POCKET GUIDL BOOK 

of 

HISTORIC HALIFAX, 
NOVA SCOTIA 



from T 




Souvenir booklet distributed by the 
Tourist and Travel Departme^flbf the 
City of Halifax L\Jj8^t 




Compiled by 
JOHN PATRICK MAR 



(A Vice-President of the N. S. Hi/torlcal Society) 



i/tori/!al Society) j// f % // ,, ^i **- Y 




'*¥?. 



The written records of this port, when it was 
known by the Indian name of "Chebucto" and by the 
French name of "Safe Bay," extend back to 1607. 



What the City is celebrating - this year is the 
200th anniversary of the official settlement beg 
here in 1749 under the name of "Halifax". 



un 



Third revision April 1949 



HISTORIC HALIFAX 




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Halifax From The Citadel 

Directing the visitor from Bedford suburb to Citadel Hill, and 

then showing surrounding sights. Description 

from the Citadel commences on page 11. 

/ T*HIS Bicentenary Booklet is prepared for the convenience of 
-*- Halifax guests visiting our Bluenose city for the first 
time, and consequently unacquainted with the geographical 
importance of our location, of the magnificence of our spacious 
harbor, and of the momentous events and famous people 
crowding our noteworthy history. The ideal vantage ground 
to get a general view of Halifax is at the top of Citadel Hill. 

The picture of the wartime convoy shown on page four 
indicates the utility of this port in times of conflict ; the pan- 
orama on a clear day from lofty Citadel Hill displays a 
marvelous view of ocean and earth; and the pages of this 
pamphlet pin-point the outstanding spots seen thereabouts, 
besides unfolding their fascinating story. 

A S THE majority of motorists approach Halifax via high- 
-^*- ways number One and Two which converge at the suburb 
of Bedford, we shall meet there in imagination to guide you 
into and about the City. You can get the lay-out by reference 
to the photo on page 4. In the foreground is the inner bay of 
the harbor, called Bedford Basin. Its outlet near top left gradu- 
ally expands into a 'Y' shaped main harbor which flows to the 
broad Atlantic far beyond. The strip of water coming in from 
sea shown at right of the picture is the North West Arm. The 
land area enclosed by the Arm and the harbor constitutes the 
peninsula of Halifax. Its portals are just beyond the white 
spot on right of photo. (The latch-string is out) . 

For untold ages the blue waters of the haven of Halifax 
have washed the skiffs of native Indians, pioneer explorers, 
European fishing smacks, smugglers, privateers, prize ships, 
murder ships, racing shells, international yachts, battle fleets 
of all nations and trans-atlantic paddle-wheelers from the old 
Cunarders, up to modern liners with their latest loads of dis- 
placed persons from Europe. (E mari merces) . 

Our shores have felt the footsteps of Micmac aborigines, 
Samuel Champlain, Governor de Villebon, Intendant Bigot, 
Admiral D'Anville, General Wolfe, Guy Carleton, Duke of 
Kent, Baron de Seitz, King Louis Phillippe, Benedict Arnold, 



6 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

Aaron Burr, Robert Rogers' rangers, Jamaica Maroons, Nan- 
tucket whalers, press gangs, pony express, Loyalist evacuees, 
William Cobbett, Thomas Moore, Captain Marryat, Charles 
Dickens, Adele Hugo, John Quincy Adams, Harry Houdini, 
Carrie Nation, Edward VII, George V, Edward VIII, George 
VI, Alexander Graham Bell, Wilfrid Laurier, and Franklin D. 
Roosevelt who viewed Halifax from a U. S. cruiser in 1939. 

Part I— Bedford to Halifax Citadel 

Number One highway was once part of a primitive trail 
cut by Acadian French as early as 1725 from Windsor to Bed- 
ford. Through it they drove cattle to be sent by vessels to their 
compatriots at Louisbourg on Cape Breton Island. To protect 
their new settlement at Halifax from French and Indian incur- 
sions at this point, the English built a stockade here at Bed- 
ford. This was the beginning of Fort Sackville near the mouth 
of a small river you are about to cross. It was at this fort that 
New England troops of Colonel John Winslow rested in 
December 1755, after marching back from their job of expell- 
ing the Acadians from the Evangeline district. 

LET us move along now through the village of Bedford until 
we come to a curving bay at Millview, identified by Moirs' 
factories. Near here is the site of one of the two places in the 
world that paper was first processed from wood fibre in 1839. 

This highway you are travelling is the route over which 
the "pony express" galloped exactly a century ago. Cunard 
liners from Liverpool to Boston carrying latest London papers 
first touched at Halifax. Highlights of European news pre- 
pared in advance would be rushed by relays of armed riders 
over this dirt road to Digby. Three hours later a steamer 
landed the dispatches in St. John, N.B., which had just been 
connected with Boston by the new telegraph system of Samuel 
Morse. Rival New York journals combined to sponsor this 
valuable news service. From these beginnings in 1849, de- 
veloped the great Associated Press. The telegraph wires were 
extended to Halifax in November 1849, and from that year 
until Atlantic cables were laid, Broadway usually got the first 
news of European events over the wire from Halifax. 

About two miles from Millview watch for a circular struc- 
ture with reddish domed roof on an elevation east of the rail- 
way. This is Prince's Lodge. The rotunda was a music pavilion, 



"PONY EXPRESS" ROAD 7 

and is all that remains of many ornamental buildings belonging 
to an extensive summer estate built between 1794 and 1800 by 
Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, Commander-in-Chief of British 
forces in North America. From the pavilion a British regi- 
mental band would discourse dance music for the Prince and 
his suite when they entertained the elite of 150 years ago. 
The main buildings were on your right up a slope landscaped 
into a miniature park with winding walks, summer-houses and 
waterfalls tinkling into a duck-pond. In after years picnic par- 
ties were ferried here from the City. Among Upper Canadian 
speakers at a hodge-podge in 1864 was Thomas D'Arcy McGee. 
Sir John A. Macdonald once campaigned here for a Dominion 
election. (He was the first Prime Minister of Canada). 

Around the next deep curve, filled-in bay over which 
railway crosses, is Birch Cove, site of a very large Indian 
encampment. As far back as 1690, Governor Villebon reported 
that a French priest was stationed at Chibouctou. Before Hali- 
fax Catholics had a church, they walked here for early Sunday 
Mass. Sir John Sherbrooke, one of Wellington's commanders 
and later Governor-General of Canada summered at Birch Cove 
around 1812. The Basin water on your left was often the scene 
of exciting aquatic events. In 1873 George Brown of Herring 
Cove won $1,000 by defeating John A. Biglin of New York 
over a five mile course — 2% miles with a turn. (E mar 
merces). (The purse was often put up by road-side inns). 

Just past Rockingham railway station, the brick build- 
ings and artistic grounds on right mark Mount Saint Vincent, 
ladies' educational institution and mother house of the Sisters 
of Charity. Exactly a century ago the first Sisters came to 
Halifax from Mount Saint Vincent-on-Hudson. Colorful cen- 
tenary pageant here in May, 1949. 

LOUISIANA and New England tourists generally stop at the 
historical cairn 300 yards south of the Mount. This is 
French Landing. One thousand sons of France died along these 
banks in 1746 from scurvy and typhus contracted in a 90-day 
voyage across the Atlantic. Their battle-fleet of 50 ships, 
anchored just off here, was bound for Boston to burn it in 
retaliation for New England's capture of Louisbourg in 1745. 
Skeletons, muskets, and ships' hulls cluttered these woods and 
shore for years afterwards. (See the pamphlet on D'Anville's 
Expedition, entitled "Our Storied Harbor"). 



8 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

Across the Basin to the northeast of you now can be 
seen the Defence Department buildings for storing munitions. 
The wide area of scorched earth on the left marks the location 
of several munition store-houses that blew up in a series of 
explosions detonating through the whole night of July 18, 
1945. Property damage for miles ran into millions. Just ahead 
of you on the high part of Halifax, the golden neon cross on 
St. Stephen's Church commemorates heroes of two World 
wars. Memorial Park near there to honor victims of a greater 
explosion in 1917. (See story on page 20). 

A T FAIR VIEW there are alternate routes to the City. We 
■** shall bear right. Across the railway to your left in Fair- 
view cemetery are 125 numbered graves of victims of White 
Star liner Titanic tragedy of 1912. These bodies were recov- 
ered in icy Newfoundland waters. See also Jewish Cemetery. 
Sharply up the hill on right inquire for headstone of Titus 
Smith, Loyalist of Granby, Mass., noted naturalist, died 1850. 

Next on your right is 18-hole golf-course of Ashburn Club. 
Watch for railway crossing here. You are now on the Dutch 
Village road. The middle line is the City boundary. Mumford 
Road next on left leads to Mount Olivet cemetery and more 
unidentified Titanic bodies. On your right at 158 Dutch Vil- 
lage Road, site of 100-acre first Zoological Gardens in North 
America 1847-1868. Established by Andrew Downs a native of 
New Brunswick, N.J. This antedated N.Y. Central Park Zoo by 
six years. Many mounted moose-heads shipped from here to 
European monarchs. A live polar bear went to King Victor 
Emmanuel of Italy. 

City traffic lights 500 yards from here. Last field on your 
right is "Stanyan" estate of the Piers' family. To the late 
Harry Piers we are indebted for historical records. Indians 
massacred three settlers at a sawmill, a short distance to your 
right, in 1754. The salt water beach ahead of you with its in- 
flow of fresh water was another old Indian camp-site. This 
North West Arm was called Waeg-walt-te-deetsch by the 
Indians, a name designating any narrow body of water coming 
to a dead end. (The new trolley coaches, which you probably 
meet at this point, have recently replaced tram-cars on most 
Halifax street routes) . 

The first recorded industry of this port was a fish-curing 
plant set up by a French Company in the late 1600's. An early 



MEMORIAL TOWER 9 

French writer, Diereville, describes their fish stages and shel- 
ters at Chebucto. The Arm is thought to be site, because the 
location is described as being "along the river". 

THE Memorial Tower on the far west side of the Arm was 
commenced in 1908. It commemorates the beginnings 
of Parliamentary government in Canada. This conspicuous 
structure is a reminder that Nova Scotia took the first steps 
towards getting the business of government into the hands of 
the common people. Up to the time of William Pitt, the laws of 
this colony were made by an English Governor and his chosen 
Councillors. The people had no vote. Then in 1758 the first 
general elections were held in Nova Scotia. That is one event 
the Tower signalizes. 

Twenty representatives of the people elected in 1758 
formed a House of Assembly to work with the Governor and 
Councillors in Nova Scotia's first Parliament. Later Great 
Britain extended this privilege of representative government 
to other important possessions. The Memorial Tower, there- 
fore, stands as a reminder that Nova Scotia led the way in the 
development of the great heritage of complete self-government 
later extended all over the British Empire. 

This 200-foot Tower is well worth a visit to inspect the 
memorial tablets, coats of arms and flags contributed by Brit- 
ish dominions, provinces and cities. There is a wonderful view 
from the top floor. The Tower property was donated by Sir 
Sandford Fleming, eminent engineer, who surveyed the rail- 
way routes through the Rockies and invented time zones. On 
the way to the Tower see his summer home. 

Pause also as you pass Melville Island, famous as a former 
military prison during the French and American wars. It is 
identified by a flotilla of beautifully designed yachts and 
motor-boats moored there. This is the Armdale Yacht Club. 
On Saturday and Sunday afternoons watch the thrilling sail- 
ing races start from this Cove. While in that direction take a 
snap-shot of a deadly souvenir of the Halifax disaster of 1917. 
This massive missile is the shank part of an iron anchor weigh- 
ing half a ton, which nose-dived into the turf, after being 
whirled from the explosion steamer over two miles away. It is 
on Edmonds' Road, not far from the Arm bridge. 

At Spryfield westward on Herring Cove road, is the 
unique 475-ton rocking-stone deposited there on surface rock 



10 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

in the glacial age. You oscillate it with a pole. Inquire for 
route. There is a fine view of the Arm in clear weather from 
the high lunch-room of Simpson's just on your left at the trol- 
ley terminus. Chebucto Road, sharp to the east, will lead you 
Cityward past a new 5 00 -dwelling project under construction 
at Westmount Heights. (This was the former City airport). 

T EAVING the Arm Bridge traffic lights, we shall proceed 
■" straight along Quinpool Road following the trolley lines. 
This North West Arm will be the scene of the Venetian night 
display and the various aquatic events during the summer. 
(See separate programs). Along the Halifax banks of the Arm 
are several prominent boating and yachting clubs. Ask about 
canoes or boats for hire. The rows of bathing houses at the 
first curve, are at Horseshoe Island where you may swim for 
a towel fee. From the wharf runs a motor-launch to the 
"Dingle" recreational park at the Memorial Tower. Bathing 
beach, outdoor movies and canteens over there. 

Moving up the hill, you pass near the residences of two 
famous Canadian Statesmen. Near the railway bridge on your 
right is "Armdale" the former estate of Sir Charles Tupper, 
sixth Prime Minister of the Dominion. (Buried in St. John's 
cemetery). A few hundred yards farther is "Pinehurst" where 
for many years dwelt Sir Robert L. Borden, eighth Prime Min- 
ister of Canada. (Grave at Grand Pre) . Plan to return around 
some of these curving residential roadways. Note the new 
brick sub-division of "Shore Acres" in this neighborhood. 

Keep straight ahead from Oxford Street traffic lights and 
you enter the theatrical and business section of west Halifax. 
The next landmarks are religious institutions on your left. 
These comprise the Monastery of the Good Shepherd, Holy 
Heart Seminary and St. Joseph's Orphanage. On the campus 
at the extreme left is St. Mary's College. Across from its front 
entrance, Williams, Welsford and Parker Streets are named 
after Crimean War heroes. On your right a short distance 
away are Shirley and Pepperrell Streets to commemorate 
Massachusetts celebrities. In this vicinity is the Arena rink 
for hockey, wrestling and boxing. Jack Dempsey performed 
there. The traffic lights will now halt you near an old willow 
tree which tradition says was once a hangman's gallows. 

^ROM here you will see a stretch of the Halifax Common, 
•-* which is a divisional area between old and new Halifax. 



MISS CANADA 1948 11 

Flooded in winter for skating and diamonded in summer for 
baseball, it is our chief recreational center. The North Com- 
mon has a stretch for horse-racing. In the northwest section at 
the flood-lighted sports field, our "Miss Halifax" of 1948, in 
the person of pretty and talented Betty Jean Ferguson was 
accorded an enthusiastic public reception last August on her 
return from Ontario with the coveted title of "Miss Canada" 
of 1948. (Down-town traffic makes a half -right turn here). 
Our destination is Citadel Hill. So from the Willow tree we 
shall follow the trolley wires to the next intersection island. 
Then drive southeasterly up the Citadel to the circular drive- 
way on the summit. Bear left so that you can park your car 
near the curved entrance in full view of the Town Clock. Now 
we are directly above the oldest section of Halifax with its 
narrow streets of colonial days, and we are gazing down on 
the greatest war-time seaport on the continent of North 
America. (Evidence of this is seen in the scars of the City) . 

/ "pHIS elevation is about 225 feet above sea-level. If the day is 
-*■ clear we should be able to learn more of the harbor, of the 
suburbs, and of the seven-square miles of the City. Winston 
Churchill did just that when he stood here in 1943. 

Part II — Sights Seen from Citadel Pathways 

This hill was once cone-shaped and rose to a height of 
nearly 258 feet. It is entirely composed of boulder-clay, carried 
and deposited by a glacier in the ice-age. At the founding of 
Halifax, the hill and countryside were studded with trees many 
of which were probably pines, for historian Piers states that 
the Indians called the peninsula of Halifax by a name that 
sounds something like Gwo-ar-mik-took, meaning "the place of 
great white pines". 

What moved the British authorities to establish a base at 
this undefended port two centuries ago, was the repeated 
appeal of Governor William Shirley of Massachusetts for some 
protective fortification between Britain's colonies in New Eng- 
land and the powerful French fortress of Louisbourg on Cape 
Breton Island. The D'Anville Expedition of 1746 had thor- 
oughly alarmed Boston. This grew into bitter wrath by 1748 
when they learned that Louisbourg had been restored to the 
French by the Treaty of Aix La Chapelle. Then it was that the 
British government deemed it advisable to grant Shirley's re- 
quests. In the very next year the authorities at London 



12 



HISTORIC HALIFAX 



equipped an expedition of over 2,50C persons under Colonel 
Edward Cornwallis. He arrived here June 21. 1749 — the birth- 
day of Halifax. As this military outpost was built largely on 
the suggestion ;: Massachusetts, Halifax has cite:: been re- 
ferred tc as New England's "baby". 







The Town Clock building cor- 
responds in style with the band- 
stand of the Duke of Kent's ISth 
century estate at Prince's Lodge. 
It was erected by the townsfolk 
and the garrison on instructions 
from the Duke. Notice that the 
faces on the south 2nd west 

are smaller than the other two. 

The clock mechanism, with its 
three 75 -pound weights, ^tjs 
manufactured in England, and 

was set up here on October 20. 
1S03. It has been ticking con- 
tinuously since then. At every 
tick, the weight drops a cog. So 
it eets a weekly winding. Other 
^eights control the hour-striker 
and the chimes. Listen at the 
quarter hour. 



XJOW let us move towards the gate. In a series of fortifica- 
**^ tions constructed since 1749. the present one (Eon 
George) is the fourth. It has long ago become obsolete. On the 
ramparts above, heavy muzzle-loading cannon now lie em- 
bedded in the earth. A century ago. it was no doubt impreg- 
nable. Examine the nine-ton granite blocks, forming the mas- 
sive walls which rise perpendicularly from the yawning moat, 
and imagine the fate of an enemy scaling the outer wall, and 
then raked in the ditch by rifle fire from those narrow gun- 
slots on both sides. The cogged windlass and the heavy draw- 
bridge over the moat remind one of a mediaeval castle. At 
the arched entrance there is usually a guide to point out the 
parade ground, the parapets, the bomb-proof chambers, and 
the tunnels where German suspects and others < including 
Leon Trotsky) were interned during World War I. 



{Behind the 



Es lie) — Rudyard 



Kipling on Halifax in "The Song of the Cities". 



TALLAHASSEE ESCAPES 13 

"OUT if time presses, we can turn and survey the City. The 
*-* expansive waters of the naturally deep harbor below, to- 
gether with the sheltering islands at its entrance, are probably 
the reasons why Halifax became England's principal outpost in 
the North Atlantic after the loss of the thirteen American 
colonies. To its position from a naval and military point of 
view, may be ascribed in great measure the success of Britain 
in her conquest of Canada. Because of its unusual accessibility, 
its comparative freedom from shoals, and its plentitude of bold 
water, the port of Halifax has been classed by experienced 
navigators as being among the select few of the best harbors 
in the world. (E mari merces) . 

The Indians had a separate name for the port. To them it 
was Chibouctou, meaning "the great harbor." The heavily 
treed island at the entrance was Chiboucto island, now named 
McNab's. The nearer one, shaped like a snowshoe was called 
He Raquette by the early French. It is now George's Island. 

The antiquity of Chebucto as a haven for European ship- 
ping is suggested by reference to the logbook of Samuel 
Champlain official cartographer of Demonts' expedition to 
Acadia in 1604. The rocky island of Sambro near the harbor's 
western entrance bears in its formation and in its submarine 
ledges a strong similarity to the island of Cezambre just off 
the port of St. Malo in France. When Champlain's exploratory 
party reached there on his visit to Chebucto in 1607, he records 
that the Malouin sailors had already named the island 
Sesambre. From that spelling comes the anglicized "Sambro". 
Champlain marked this harbor une bate fort saine, (very safe 
bay). Diereville the French botanist who spent some time 
here in the summer of 1699 must have had the name on his 
map for he continually makes reference to Bayesenne. (An 
1887 Rockingham newspaper thinks that from the English 
pronunciation of Bayesenne comes the name "Basin"). 

In the era of wooden ships, the harbor bristled with masts. 
This was especially true in times of conflict when two or three 
hundred vessels would be anchored in the roadstead. During 
the American Civil War, Confederate blockade runners sallied 
in and out continually. One of them, trapped in this port, made 
one of the most daring escapes in shipping history. That long 
arm of water left of the treed-island, is Eastern Passage. At 
the distant outlet there is a curving narrow channel in the 
middle of shallow shifting sands. Only small craft ever use it. 



14 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

In August 1864 the Confederate gunboat Tallahassee, after 
wreaking havoc among enemy ships along the Atlantic coast, 
tied up at Woodside wharf near that brick sugar refinery. She 
obtained 48 hours grace in this neutral port to load coal and 
provisions. Hot on her heels, pursuing northern cruisers hove- 
to off the main harbor exit, and cocked their cannon for the 
carnage. On the flood tide of the second night, the darkened 
southern warship, guided by a local pilot, Jock Flemming, 
steamed, twisted, and drifted through the treacherous south- 
east Passage. At times it is said she almost swished the eel 
grass. By dawn the speedy Tallahassee was far away to the 
eastward. Her commander was J. Taylor Wood, a nephew of 
Confederate President Jefferson Davis. In after years Cap- 
tain Wood resided at Halifax. See his grave in Camp Hill 
cemetery. He died in 1904. (See the poem "Tallahassee"). 

Those 300 cylindrical tanks on left, are at the plant and 
village of Imperoyal where crude oil is refined. On the plateau 
beyond is Shearwater Naval Air Base where land the trans- 
Canada planes. The crescent-shaped bank near the oil pier is 
site of the Eastern Battery, 1754. Later called Fort Clarence. 
It protected that side of the harbor from attack eastward. In a 
bay around the bend from Imperoyal, American naval aircraft 
were based during World War I. Among men there was 
Admiral Richard E. Byrd of Antarctic fame. 

On the leafy bank above the wharf next north of the 
brick refinery stands the Nova Scotia Hospital. Site chosen in 
1856 by Miss Dorothy Dix, American philanthropist interested 
in mental diseases. In the harbor just off the hospital smoke- 
stack, notice two buoys moored over the "Trongate," munition 
laden steamer sunk to save the City in 1942, after the ship had 
burst into flames. Farther to the north under the checkered 
water-tower is the Department of Transport pier, whence go 
supplies for Sable Island, and shore lighthouses. 

Near rural Woodlawn, just over those eastern hills, there 
came in 1815, a young Scottish schoolmaster named James 
Gordon Bennett. He afterwards founded the New York Herald. 
At Preston six miles in that direction, Sir John Wentworth, 
Governor of Nova Scotia had his summer estate. A native of 
Wolfboro, N. H., he had been Governor of New Hampshire 
before the Revolution. Loyalists who crowded Halifax at this 
period, were granted lands at Preston. The name originates 
with Captain Preston who was involved in the Boston mas- 



EARLY AMERICAN INDUSTRY 15 

sacre of 1770. Later Jamaica Maroons occupied the Preston 
area. When they were deported, their huts were inhabited by 
increasing numbers of slaves escaping from Southern plan- 
tations during the War of 1812. Their descendants remain. 

In the vicinity of the Shipyards plant at Dartmouth, 
which you distinguish by a long pier or by vessels hauled up on 
"cradles," the first massacre of Halifax settlers occurred two 
hundred years ago. Four workers were slaughtered by Indians 
near a saw-mill which had just been set up. A far worse killing 
and scalping occurred at Dartmouth in 1751. In the calm of the 
night, terrified screams of women and children could be dis- 
tinctly heard across the water. Dartmouth is also the site of 
the whaling industry which came from Nantucket, Mass., in 
1785. The fishermen and their families belonged to the Society 
of Friends. Their Quaker-shaped dwellings still stand. 

/ T^AKE up your position now so as to gaze down the hill by 
>•*- the Town Clock. This is George Street. The tall trees 
half-way down are at the Granld Parade. It was reserved from 
the commencement of the City as a public space for drill- 
grounds, proclamations and state ceremonies. The City Hall 
cf Halifax stands at one end, facing a Cenotaph for World War 
heroes at the other. On a hill just behind this monument is 
the oldest building in Halifax — Saint Paul's Anglican Church. 
The Grand Parade fronts on Barrington Street which is the 
main shopping and theatrical thoroughfare down-town. That 
128-foot flag-pole of British Columbia fir at the Parade, on 
which flies the flag of Nova Scotia, was a gift of the Canadian 
Pacific Railway in 1947. In this square you may relax on the 
benches under the broad shade-trees of our mid-town oasis, 
and enjoy the colorful display of flowers blooming on the 
greensward. (Men's comfort room on Barrington street side). 

Between the Parade and the shore, the first buildings 
were constructed. At the stone slip foot of George Street 
was built a government wharf. Here the mighty army of 
General James Wolfe rowed ashore from Admiral Saunders' 
trans-Atlantic fleet to stretch their sea-legs before re-embark- 
ing in May, 1759 to participate in the conquest of Canada. 

Two blocks north of George is Buckingham Street. Some- 
where down the slope near here ran the northern boundary 
of the early palisades of Halifax. The southern boundary was 
over to your right near those high church steeples. (See cut) . 



16 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

You can thus mark out with your eye the original rec- 
tangular enclosure below you, upon which were built the 
beginnings of the first English settlement of any import- 
ance in the whole of the present Dominion of Canada. At 
that time the only others outside Nova Scotia were Hud- 
son's Bay posts in the Far West. 

The colony's original number of 2576 was greatly in- 
creased by evacuated troops from Louisbourg and by hundreds 
from New England, who thronged hither on sailing vessels to 
enjoy the one year rations to new settlers and the fifty acres 
of land. Some were quartered on ships, others on George's 
Island or in tents on the mainland. Meanwhile frames and 
boards kept coming from Boston. One building erected in 
1750 with this material, is still standing. 

It is St. Paul's Church, situated diagonally opposite 
Eaton's corner. You can get a better view of its roof by 
moving northerly along the foot-path until you look down 
Duke Street — one block north of George. About 35 degrees 
to your right, see the three-tiered cupola with the weather- 
vaned spire. That is the oldest Protestant Church in Canada, 
enlarged and altered now, but still composed of some lumber 
and pine beams freighted by a sailing ship out of Britain's 
colony at Boston, nearly 200 years ago. St. Paul's Church has 
records from the beginnings of the City. The earliest entry 
is a burial of John White, mariner, June 21, 1749 — the day 
that Cornwallis sailed in. St. Paul's boasts a Royal founda- 
tion. That means it was ordered by the King. Visit this 
edifice to inspect the hatchments with armorial devices of old 
English families and the memorial tablets. The communion 
plate dates from the time of Queen Anne. Twenty vaults 
underneath the church contain the remains of Admirals, 
Governors and other celebrities. Nelson's friend, Thomas 
Hardy, married here in 1807. (A guide is present in summer) . 

A large sandstone structure which was completed in the 
year 1819 is also visible from where you stand. A little to the 
left of St. Paul's, just below the high green dome, find a long 
low pitch-roof. This is Province House, seat of the Nova 
Scotia Legislature and Executive Government offices. This is 
said to be one of the finest examples of Georgian architecture 
on the Continent. A guide there will show you the red 
chamber of the old Legislative Council with full length paint- 
ings of England's Sovereigns alongside distinguished naval 



OLDEST IMPORTANT ENGLISH SETTLEMENT 



17 







St. Raul's Cdt|urci], Jfaiifax, #. £►. 

17 50 

This is an early sketch of St. Paul's by Richard Short of the Royal 
Navy. It is one of his six drawings done in Halifax. Short was here 
in 1759. He made a similar series in Quebec after its capture. The 
weather-vaned building on right, is where the oldest continuous news- 
paper in North America commenced in 1752. (See page 18). 

and military mights looking down on the long oaken table 
around which sat the Council of Cornwallis and subsequent 
Governors. Grate fires heated this immense Chamber. In 
the Legislative Library room which was once a Court House, 
the Saladin pirates were convicted in 1844. In the same room 
in 1835, Joseph Howe won a victory for his newspaper charged 
with libelling the rulers of Halifax. Howe's statue stands out- 
side. The main entrance on Hollis Street displays two 
ancient lamps from Waterloo Bridge. Outside is seen a brace 
of historic cannon used in the Chesapeake-Shannon naval duel 
in 1813. The names of Boer War heroes are inscribed on the 
statue of the soldier with his rifle aloft signalling "ENEMY 
IN SIGHT". Corner-stone laid October 1901 by Duke of York, 
who later became King George V. 



18 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

The grey sandstone building of Corinthinian columns 
with the green dome to the left of the Province House, is the 
former Post Office building. Historical plate is affixed here to 
record that the first Post Office in the present Canada was 
established at Halifax in 1755. Another plaque just north at 
190 Hollis Street to mark the quarters of Sir John Moore, 
thirty years before he died heroically at Corunna in 1809. 
At the same address in August 1876, a thief lifted $21,000 
from the Bank of Nova Scotia while the entire staff were out 
on the sidewalk watching Barnum's circus parade. The reddish 
sandstone building containing the clock tower nearby is the 
Dominion Customs House. It overlooks the old market square 
on the George Street space where once stood the town's gal- 
lows tree and pillory. The Halifax City Hall and gaol used 
to stand where now is located a circular drinking fountain. 

For many years along the streets and side walks of this 
vicinity there flourished one of Halifax's unique tourist attrac- 
tions. It was the green market, conducted in primitive 
fashion where were displayed on wagons and boxes, various 
arrays of vegetables, poultry, lobsters and so on. Bedford Row 
and Cheapside would be lined on a Saturday with solemn 
squaws, merry darkeys, and Acadian women with kerchief- 
covered heads chattering their patois. The City market, 
directly below you, still carries on the practice. Visit it 
early on a Friday. (E mari merces) . 

QOUTH of the Market building is Duke Street. Just over 
^ Moirs' roof is seen the pyramidical green tower of the City 
Hall. It replaced a long stone structure, commenced in 1819, 
where Dalhousie College functioned until 1887. This College got 
its start from Customs funds collected by the British when 
they occupied Castine, Maine, during the War of 1812. See 
metal plaque at City Hall entrance on the Grand Parade. 

Up one block at 173 Grafton Street, historical plate marks 
the printing place of the "Halifax Gazette", the first news- 
paper in Canada, 1752. This is still published weekly as the 
"Royal Gazette", and is the oldest continuous journal in North 
America. Printing plant brought here in 1751 from Boston by 
Bartholomew Green whose parent of the same name originated 
the well-known Cambridge Press. Isaiah Thomas, pioneer his- 
torian of printing in America and founder of the Worcester 
Spy, worked for his board on the Halifax Gazette in 1765. 



CUNARD LINE COMMENCED 19 

At the foot of Duke Street a historical plaque on the 
northwest corner of Water Street marks the site of the Great 
Pontac Inn, which was the leading hotel in 1758 when General 
James Wolfe gave a grand party and ball there. Wolfe's mili- 
tary headquarters are also marked by a plate at 158 Holiis 
Street. North of the Great Pontac on Water Street, the 
sturdy stone structure marked "BANK" is thought to be the 
oldest bank building in Canada. Erected by merchant prince 
Enos Collins, owner of Gorsebrook estate, about the year 1812. 

The Gavin Rainnie highway below you was cut in 1947 
to extend Duke Street and to relieve the east-west traffic. The 
uniformity of the glacis all around this Citadel was made by 
gradually filling in the hollows with earth excavated from the 
cut-down crest, so that the whole slope could be swept by 
firing from the ramparts. The courtyard buildings at the 
northern base and those just west, are the Pavilion and Glacis 
Barracks respectively. Many of these untaxed buildings 
which have been in military hands since the time of the 
founding are now the property of the City. Down Jacob 
Street hill at this point you can see a slate roof with a rather 
sharp pitch, adjoining Clayton's. That is the old Trinity 
(Garrison) Church where the parade of the troops on Sunday 
would attract throngs in bygone days. It is on the site ot 
Grenadier Fort, northern blockhouse of the early palisades. 

In line with your eye over the top of Clayton's the long 
concrete piers is Deep Water Terminal. Just south of this stood 
the wharf where transatlantic Canadian shipping was born, 
for Samuel Cunard set up his huge stone warehouse and 
offices there to inaugurate the famous Cunard Line between 
Liverpool and Boston, with a call at Halifax. The paddle- 
wheeler Britannia made the first trip in July, 1840. Cunard's 
wharf was the mecca for crowds of people who for many years 
were always drawn thither when a gun from the "mail boat" 
announced to folks on shore that she was passing George's 
Island. Hundreds of celebrities from the Old World set foot 
on the soil of the New World for the first time in the vicinity 
of Cunard's. Read Charles Dickens' impressions of Halifax in 
1842 in his volume "American Notes". A hundred yards up 
where tall elms still grow behind 257 Brunswick St., Samuel 
Cunard was born. Most of the armed forces to leave Canada 
during World War I embarked at Pier 2, because the Ocean 
Terminals had not yet been constructed. 



20 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

TUST north of this, the vast array of spars, funnels and 
** cranes locates the headquarters of the Canadian Navy in 
the North Atlantic. This is His Majesty's Dockyard, established 
in 1758. An old tower near the middle gate has a large metal 
clock which was constructed in London in 1769. It is thought 
to be the oldest time piece in the Dominion still operating. 
That large electric crane on Jetty 3 is capable of lifting a 
weight of thirty-five tons. Among the fleet of destroyers and 
frigates, you might see Canada's new aircraft carrier H.M.C.S. 
Magnificent. Edward VII landed here in 1860 when he was 
Prince of Wales, and his grandson, Edward VIII landed at the 
same spot in 1919 when he was Prince of Wales. Prince 
William Henry, who later became William IV, was a familiar 
figure around Halifax when his warship was stationed here in 
1787. Admiral Provo Wallis who commanded the Shannon 
when she brought in the captured Chesapeake during the War 
of 1812, was born in Dockyard. He lived to be nearly 101. Cap- 
tain Marryatt, who was here in 1810, incorporated Halifax 
characters into his famous stories. From Dockyard most South 
African war troops embarked and disembarked 1899-1902. 

The Dockyard was also the base during the war for about 
forty trawler-sized craft used as mine-sweepers that came 
and went continually to drag the waters day and night 
sweeping up the enemy's magnetic mines planted in the ship- 
ping lanes off the harbor. Their effective work was vital in 
saving Europe. Many souvenirs of two World wars including 
the Kaiser's battle flags are on display here in the Maritime 
Museum. Inquire about admission. (E mari merces) . 

The most northerly smokestack at the waterfront locates 
the Halifax Shipyards. At this yard and at their Dartmouth 
branch 7,000 repair jobs were made on all kinds of craft during 
World War II. In addition they built four destroyers of the 
tribal class. Three more merchant ships for the Argentine 
Government are now under construction. Get passes for this 
plant and inspect there one of the largest drydocks in the 
world, and also their capacious floating drydock. In the nar- 
row body of water just north of here off Richmond occurred 
the tragic explosion of December 6, 1917. The Mont Blanc, 
carrying picric acid and TNT was grazed by the Imo coming 
down the Narrows. Bursting drums of benzol sprayed other 
chemicals to start a dangerous blaze. Then the TNT exploded 
with one terrific and thunderous detonation, causing a con- 



GREAT DISASTER OF 1917 21 

cussion which drove the steamer "Imo" upon the Dartmouth 
shore. The Mont Blanc was blown to pieces. Her bow anchor 
landed three miles westerly at the North West Arm. A large 
cannon on her stern deck described an arc through the air to 
land at Albro's Lake, far to the east of where you see the rect- 
angle of reddish roofs of the prefabricated houses near Tufts' 
Cove. All the dwellings of Richmond which stood on the west 
slope, together with their unsuspecting occupants were 
suddenly flattened by a vicious blast, and then the ruins were 
destroyed by resulting fires. Eighteen hundred people lost 
their lives that day, and eight thousand went homeless. The 
weather was fair, with just a slight breeze. The time was 
9:05 a.m. Assistance immediately began to pour into Halifax 
from all over a sympathetic world on that occasion, with the 
swiftest response coming from New England. Within a 
matter of hours a relief train of doctors, nurses and supplies 
raced out of Boston. The colonial "baby" of 1749 was 
crying in distress, and the Massachusetts "mother" was in- 
stinctively responding. 

On the high land above the Narrows (called "kebec" by 
the Indians) was erected Fort Needham in 1778 to command 
the Narrows and the Dockyard. Near the foot of Young St., 
the boathouse of the well known Lome Aquatic Club, stood 
until the 1917 Explosion. From there to turning buoys at 
Deep Water stretched the 1% mile course for boat and shell 
racing before the North West Arm boating clubs were origi- 
nated. At Mulgrave Park, just above old Pier 7, occurred the 
only fatal duel in Halifax when William Bowie was fatally 
wounded by R. J. Uniacke junior in 1819. At Richmond was 
our first railway station whence the first train out of Halifax 
ran to the end of the line at Fairview, January 20, 1855. 
The railway was extended from Richmond southerly to North 
Street later when the Intercolonial erected the finest fireproof 
passenger station in Eastern Canada in 1876. Most of it was 
pulverized in the 1917 Explosion. Then trains were diverted 
prematurely into the present Terminals. 

Bring your attention back to Deep Water now and look 
up the hill to find the 190-foot spire of St. Patrick's Roman 
Catholic Church. Then see slightly to the left a low weather- 
vaned reddish cupola. This is St. George's Round Church, 
corner of Brunswick and Cornwallis Streets, opened 1801. 
Governor Desbarres of Cape Breton, and compiler of the 



22 



HISTORIC HALIFAX 



Atlantic Neptune, was buried under here at the age of 102. 
The circular architecture of this edifice compares with Prince's 
Lodge and the Old Town Clock building, the style of which tra- 
dition says was adopted to please the fancy of Prince Edward, 
Duke of Kent, father of Queen Victoria. 

One block north of St. George's at the corner of Gerrish 
Street, stands the little Butch Church and rustic cemetery 
commenced about 1756. Visit this curious relic of antiquity 
to see the practice of those people of erecting their buildings 
with ends facing the street. On the chicken-cock weather- 
vane the German abbreviations for the compass points are 
lettered NSO W. All this section of early Halifax was 
Dutch-town, inhabited by German and Swiss settlers wishing 
to isolate themselves from other downtown races. Gerrish's 
vast gardens to furnish the forces with vegetables were near 
here. In Stadacona Barracks field at the far end of Brunswick 
Street is Admiralty House, official residence of the Admiral 




. 



Original Little Dutch (Deutsch) Church and school house. One of 
the oldest and the smallest in North America. Now part of St. George's 
parish. See the ancient churchyard adjacent. 

In front is John Sparks and his Missus all the way in from Preston 
with their Saturday load of firewood, clothes props, mayflowers, wild 
berries, and so on. The ox-mobile used to be a common sight on market 
day. Now fast disappearing. 



NOTED NORTH END 23 

of the British Navy here from 1819 to 1905. After the 1917 
Explosion it was a Naval Hospital. Later used by the Massa- 
chusetts Relief Commission as a health centre. Now the 
Senior Officers Mess. The frescoed ceiling in one room is said 
to be the finest example of this type of workmanship in North 
America. The colored boy George Dixon, featherweight cham- 
pion until defeated by Terry McGovern, born just west of 
Gottingen Street in the year 1870. 

Move now to the northwest salient angle of the Citadel. 
You can now see the Naval Armament Depot northerly across 
the harbor near the large whitish building on the shoreline. 
At this Depot is handled all heavy material for ships of war. 
These buildings and piers were constructed during World War 
II as were all the sections of prefabricated dwellings which 
you will see by visiting the north and northwest of Halifax. 
That reddish tower building about half way up Gottingen 
Street is the School for the Deaf for the Maritime Provinces 
and Newfoundland, commenced 1856. In the distance quite to 
your left near the Forum note the high roof of the grandstand 
on grounds of the former Provincial Exhibition. As a mark of 
appreciation of prompt relief after the Great Explosion, there 
sprang up in the vast enclosure a mushroom village of shelters 
whose streets bore names of New England States like "Mass. 
Avenue". A playing field now marks the area. All this valu- 
able property including the Forum, used by the militia during 
the war has recently been acquired by the City from the 
Dominion Government as a result of the persistent efforts of 
Mayor Ahern. Now the buildings are producing revenue for 
Halifax. Crowds throng the Forum for winter hockey games. 
Watch for summer horse-show here. (See program) . 

T)ROCEED westerly to the next angle and view the broad 
■*■ stretch of the North Common. Here is a lay-out which is a 
survival of an Old World custom long prevalent in medieval 
Europe when settlements reserved tracts of land for open 
common pastures — the village green — where cattle grazed, and 
swine and sheep foraged through the woods. The original 
Commons must have extended past South Street to your left 
and westward to Robie, for when the large charitable institu- 
tions began to build on the South Commons eighty years ago, 
there was a strong protest from owners of cows and horses 
down that way. According to Mr. Harry Piers, the woods 
suiTounding the stream through the middle ground abounded 



24 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

in curlew, plover and blue-winged ducks. Old Micmac Indians 
have said that moose used to be killed on the site of the 
Common. Cows continued to range the North Common up to 
about the first decade of this century. The half-grogged 
Citadel Tommy on mid-summer night's leave, still ran the risk 
of stumbling over a squatting bossy contentedly ruminating in 
the shadows of the sheltering shade-trees. 

17 EEP moving now along the western pathway. The red- 
■" dish building due west is Queen Elizabeth Senior High 
School, largest in the Province, enrolment of over 900. We 
have about 14,000 students in City schools. During World 
War II the population bulged from 60,000 to about 100,000. 
One or two thousand have since left. (The suburban areas are 
also thickening, thus creating sanitation and fire hazards). 
The Camp Hill Military Hospital buildings 1917, are just south 
of Queen Elizabeth. The building activity beneath your eye, 
to the east of Ahern Avenue is the million and a half dollars 
Vocational School for Halifax County. At Camp Hill Hospital 
lives indomitable Walter Callow, blind paralytic, famous as the 
originator of wheel-chair buses for War Veterans. 

The children on the prancing ponies below you, belong to 
the Halifax Riding and Driving Club just across the Bell 
Road. The juvenile Bengal Lancers, who thrilled thousands 
at Toronto Winter Fair and at Boston, train on these grounds. 
Slightly west of the stables is the City field, and just south 
is the leading baseball park of Halifax — the Wanderers' 
Grounds. One block west with its entrance on Summer Street 
is Camp Hill cemetery, containing the grave of Joseph Howe. 
See the monument there over the remains of Dr. Abraham 
Gesner who first extracted kerosene oil from coal. This discov- 
ery later led to the tremendous development of the present oil 
industry. Hangman's tree north end of Summer Street. 

Far over the trees to the southwest you may see the 
roofs of Studley where are situated most of the buildings of 
Dalhousie University. King's College which associated with 
Dalhousie in 1923 is the oldest Canadian University, being 
founded at Windsor in 1789. Visit the beautiful grounds out 
there in the summer. The Provincial Archives where much of 
the material in this little book was unearthed, comprises one 
of the group of buildings. Shirreff Hall for lady students, is 
at the far end. The old Studley Quoit Club with its outdoor 



CULTURAL COLLEGE CENTER 25 

telephone is adjacent. Farther along is Pine Hill Divinity 
College for students of the United Church. From here in 1907 
went Sir Robert Falconer to be President of Toronto Univer- 
sity until 1932. Joseph Howe's birthplace is marked on a 
plaque near Pine Hill. The streets and their residences in the 
newer parts of the City especially bordering the Arm are very 
artistically laid out. Drive around the southwest sections for 
private garden displays. In this vicinity see the town home 
at 427 South Street of Sir Sandford Fleming, the man who 
conceived the idea of world standard time zones, first promul- 
gated in 1879, and since adopted all over the globe. (France did 
not approve this plan until 1919) . 

Move along the path now and bring your attention nearer. 
The pointed tower with the bell top is the Convent of the 
Sacred Heart opened 1849. The oblong-shaped tower over the 
red building beyond that is the Forrest Building of Dalhousie 
University. Many Canadian greats attended there m the days 
when that building housed all the faculties. It now shelters 
the Law, Medical and Dental schools. Dalhousie moved here in 
1887 from its original location on the Grand Parade. On the 
left is the Provincial Government's fifteen storey structure of 
the Victoria General Hospital opened 1948. It is the largest 
hospital east of Montreal, and the tallest re-inforced concrete 
building in North America. The original V. G. Hospital of 
1859 stands alongside. On this part of the South Common the 
Saladin pirates were hanged in 1844. The Children's Hospital, 
the Grace Maternity Hospital, the Public Health Clinic, and 
the Pathological Institute are in the vicinity also. Directly 
this way from the Victoria General the trap-rock building of 
Gothic style is All Saints Anglican Cathedral. Burns' monu- 
ment in Victoria Park nearby. Bust of Sir W. Scott opposite. 

At the southern end of the Park, two blocks away, is the 
School for the Blind, opened 1871. Across the street is Holy 
Cross Cemetery where stands a small Catholic Chapel built 
in one day in 1843. Here lies Sir John S. D. Thompson, native 
Haligonian and fourth Premier of Canada, died 1894. At the 
extremity of this street you park your car, and drive in a 
carriage or walk to view the various forts and the Martello 
Tower of Point Pleasant Park enclosing 200 acres of timbered 
soil and vegetation. Guide at the golden gates' entrance in sum- 
mer will drive your party in a gay '90 barouche to view the 
150-year-old forts. See antique carriages barned there. 



26 



HISTORIC HALIFAX 





i .: .: '. 



THE CHURCH THAT WAS BUILT IN A DAY 

Erected Thursday, August 31, 1843, by the voluntary labor of Halifax 
Catholics. The foundation had been laid beforehand. Construction work 
commenced about 9 a.m., and by 7 p.m., this Gothic church was raised, 
roofed, boarded, lathed, shingled, and painted. (Courtesy "The Angelus")* 

/^OME around now to face the middle of the Garrison Cricket 
^ Grounds below. This was the exercising ground for 
the troops, laid out in 1772 and extending to the Wanderers' 
Grounds. Military executions "behind the Citadel Hill" took 
place here for many years. Here is where official Halifax 
welcomed back Canadians from Overseas after World War II. 
The greatest gathering ever to assemble at this amphitheatre 
was on a sunny afternoon in June, 1939 when King George VI 
and Queen Elizabeth were present to witness a splendid his- 
torical pageant which climaxed their tour of North America. 
About twenty thousand flag-waving children formed a multi- 
colored phalanx along this southwest slope to witness the un- 
forgettable spectacle and to huzzah fond farewells to Their 
Majesties as they left for home on the Empress of Britain. 

At the distant corner on the left is a vast area containing 
the Public Gardens of Halifax. This is one of the most striking 



BEAUTIFUL PUBLIC GARDENS 27 

spots in North America. Stroll along its winding walks to 
enjoy seventeen acres of unrivalled loveliness with its mini- 
ature lake for swans and ducks; its artistic flower beds and 
lawns; and its exotic shrubs and shade-trees. Mingled in the 
soil is a quantity of earth from the State of Alabama contri- 
buted on the occasion of the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Vic- 
toria in 1897. Florida also sent us one of her beautiful palms. 
Inquire for the 70-year old willow planted by Rev. Henry Ward 
Beecher. Before 1872 most of this area was boggy, brambiy 
and briar grown. This marvelous transformation (together 
with the setting-out of most of those shade trees on the neigh- 
boring sidewalks and on the Common) was largely accomplish- 
ed under the long superintendency of Richard Power who died 
in 1934 in his 94th year. (Make the Gardens visit a must). 

Midway on the South Park Street side of the Gardens is 
the site of the first covered rink in Halifax (perhaps in Can- 
ada) built by military officials in 1862. Halifax and Dartmouth 
stoutly maintain that ice-hockey originated hereabouts. Op- 
posite that part of the Gardens is the Lord Nelson Hotel 
where is located radio station CJCH. Back one block this way, 
the white building contains the studios of the Canadian Broad- 
casting Corporation. Visit these stations. 

OWING around now to the angle point of the south and see 
^ the long stony shore on McNab's Island running out to the 
lighthouse at Mauger's (Major's) Beach. This is another of 
five original Martello Towers. It was built during the War 
of 1812 directly opposite York Redoubt, to command with 
crossfire the fairway to the inner harbor. Later turned into a 
lighthouse. Here once dangled in chains the six mutineers of 
the "Columbine". From Mauger's Beach lighthouse straight 
across to the western shore, a netted boom was stretched dur- 
ing world War II to protect inner harbor from submarines. In 
the early years of the war they caused serious losses off there. 
See the rear half of the gasoline-tanker "Kars" towed in after 
being torpedoed ten miles out and beached to the east of the 
northwest tip of McNab's Island. Forty-six men perished in 
waters of flaming oil. (View this area with binoculars from 
the Nova Scotian Hotel roof -garden) . 

Thrum Cap shoal is the far sandy bank where you pro- 
bably see white caps breaking. Buried near there, are two 
hundred cholera victims of S.S. England bound to New York 



28 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

from Liverpool in 1866. Under those distant waters in two 
World Wars, German U-boats lurked continually preying on 
convoys. Some of them prowled up to the steel net-work that 
fenced the very harbor entrance. In 1943 a wide arc off there 
was found to be infested with sunken magnetic mines. One 
floated to betray all. The bleak shore of this whole sector east- 
ward and westward, was systematically pegged with search- 
light batteries and anti-aircraft cannon. Overhead intermittent 
formations of reconnaissance planes regularly scoured the sur- 
rounding sea in search of enemy periscopes. 

Tribune shoal near Thrum Cap is the reef on which a 
prize British ship La Tribune pounded in 1797, before drifting 
half-sunken across to break up on the Herring Cove rocks. 
About 300 perished. Note the rugged coast-line of that west- 
ern side to your right. In the poem "Boston", Thomas Moore 
records his impressions leaving Halifax in 1803 : 

. . . "And that chill Nova Scotia's unpromising strand 
Is the last I shall tread of American land. . . ." 

On the blue waters off here were held the International 
Sailing Races of 1920-1923, when the Lunenburg fishing 
schooner Bluenose brought glory to Canada by her successive 
victories. The Bluenose is embossed on Canadian dimes. For 
the thrill of sea fishing, engage boats and gear at Herring 
Cove seven miles from Arm Bridge. Or go by motor boat 
from Market Slip, Halifax. Telephone Ferry Taxi for infor- 
mation. This service will transport you anywhere in the 
harbor or Basin. No canteen on McNab's Island. Take 
lunches and go there on a warm day. On the Point Pleasant 
Shore is the Royal N. S. Yacht Squadron inaugurated 1837. 
Yacht races off here on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Ocean 
race of 1949 from Marblehead, Mass., finishes here. Tourists 
are invited to view the yachts here. In 1809 the body of Jor- 
dan, the pirate, dangled in chains on the bank near the foot of 
Miller Street. (Bathe your feet at the beach nearby) . 

As you round the last turn, look down at the south end 
of Brunswick Street. All this property across Sackville Street 
has been a military possession since 1749. Recently acquired 
by the City. Across the roofs in a straight line the oblong 
reddish building on the Drill Hall site is the N. S. Technical 
College, where our Province led the rest of Canada by estab- 
lishing a, comprehensive system of technical education in 1907. 



GATEWAY TO CANADA 29 

Visit the Museum in this building for a varied collection of our 
relics and curiosities. The huge mass of yellowish brick 
farther along is the 300-bed Halifax Infirmary, instituted 1867 
on another site. Gordon and Keith manufactured fine furni- 
ture near here. The rising ground just beyond is known 
as Fort Massey. The church there marks the location of a 
battery set up to command the hollow made by the brook as it 
swept out to sea at Smith Street. Grave of Sir John Harvey, 
hero of Stoney Creek in Fort Massey cemetery. To the south 
of that is the large Government Grain Elevator with a capa- 
city of two and a half million bushels. Government cold storage 
plant is just on left of elevator. Note deep railway cutting. 

On the waterfront there, are the sturdy piers and quay 
wall of National Harbours Board, where the depth of water 
permits accommodation for liners of any draught. There are 
facilities to berth fifteen of them. When the huge Queen 
Mary and Queen Elizabeth popped into the harbor about the 
same time during the recent conflict, they were both tied up 
very snugly at this east coast Ocean Terminal. Armed forces 
to and from World War II and most of the material from 
Canada for the invasion of Europe went through this port. 
The record for numbers carried was made by the Queen 
Elizabeth. On one trip, in the dark days of World War II, she 
packed 28,000 troops. (E mari merces). 

During the months that the St. Lawrence river is frozen, 
most of the export and import freight for the whole of Canada 
is transferred at this point. In 1948 about 75,000 immigrants 
landed here from Europe. They were promptly forwarded on 
waiting boat-trains lined up alongside. At the Union Railway 
Depot there, see the primitive locomotive "Samson" now about 
110 years old. Across the square from the Depot visit Broad- 
casting House, the home of CHNS, pioneer commercial radio 
station of Halifax. Said to contain the most modern radio facil- 
ities in Eastern Canada. 

The very high steeple near you is St. Mary's Roman 
Catholic Cathedral, said to be the tallest spire of granite in the 
world. Observe its artistic granite facade. Opened in 1829, 
this was the first stone church in Halifax. Behind it then 
stood St. Peter's wooden church built 1784. One block up is 
Grafton Park with trees and seats covering old cemetery. 
Saladin pirate buried here. Halifax Memorial Library under 



30 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

construction. A little farther up are offices of the Board of 
Trade. Opposite the Park is the County Jail and Law Courts, 
erected 1860. (Kindly register at Tourist Bureau near here). 

The railed fence down the hill encloses our oldest cemetery 
— always an object of intense interest to tourists. Amid the 
hundreds of graves, lie many of the Hutchinsons connected 
with the last royal Governor of Massachusetts. Consult St. 
Paul's records. The body of Captain James Lawrence of the 
Chesapeake, best remembered for his dying command, "Don't 
Give Up the Ship", was buried here in 1813. Later re-interred 
in Trinity Churchyard, New York. The heavy table-monument 
under the twin-trees just southwest of mid-cemetery, marks 
the resting place of the British Major- General Robert Ross 
who in the War of 1812 captured Washington, D.C. He fell a 
few weeks later besieging Baltimore, the successful defence of 
which inspired Francis Scott Key to compose "The Star 
Spangled Banner". North of the Ross tomb some fifty yards, 
see a crudely cut head-stone upon which is etched "1752" — the 
oldest record in the graveyard. Ramble round in here to read 
the quaint epitaphs. At the Barrington Street entrance, the 
Welsford-Parker monument commemorates the sacrifice of two 
Nova Scotian military officers at Sebastopol. Said to be the only 
Crimean War Memorial in America. * (Dulce et decorum est 
pro patria mori) (Horace Odes) . 

OPPOSITE the cemetery is the official residence of the Lieu- 
tenant Governor of Nova Scotia. This is Government 
House. It is one of the oldest executive mansions in North 
America. Built nearly 150 years ago in the regime of Gover- 
nor Wentworth, its Georgian architecture corresponds closely 
with the style of many New England homes of the late 18th 
century. Note the easy transition of the front flat wall into 
the rounded bays by means of small towered sections. Royalty, 
celebrities and aborigines have entered this crescent-shaped 
driveway to attend conferences, ceremonies and entertain- 
ments. In the spacious old ball-room on the north side, the 
belles of Halifax have danced with braided military and naval 
partners. It was here that the petrel of American politics, 
Aaron Burr came, incognito in 1808, with a startling scheme 
for British-American seizure of Spanish possessions then just 
south of his Republic. 

V'A sweet and beautiful thing it is to die for one's country"). 




INTERNATIONAL BURYING GROUND 31 

This was the first 
Martello Tower built in 
Halifax between 179G 
and 1798. It is on the 
highest ground of Point 
Pleasant Park. It was 
then able to command 
the North West Arm 
and Point Pleasant Bat- 
teries and Fort Ogilvie. 
(There are more evi- 
dences of glacial action 
in the surface rock 
scratches here). 

The second highest steeple in that vicinity is St. Mat- 
thew's United Church next north of Government House. This 
congregation is a continuation of those who set up a Dissent- 
ers' Meeting house near 184 Hollis Street at the beginnings of 
Halifax. Their first Minister from 1750 to 1754, was Rev. 
Aaron Cleaveland, great-grandfather of ex-President Grover 
Cleveland. The brilliant Dr. G. M. Grant went from St. Mat- 
thew's in 1877 to become President of Queen's University, at 
Kingston, Ont. (E mari merces) . 

At this point we are back again at the site of the south 
palisades. The sloping street north of the Capitol Theater is 
named for Malachy Salter of Massachusetts who carried on 
trade at Chebucto in the days before it was settled. Down this 
hill on Hollis Street, Victor Hugo's daughter Mademoiselle 
Adele, lived incognita in 1861. Moved by her futile fondness 
for a Lieutenant Pinsen while in the Channel Islands, she had 
followed his regiment to Halifax. 

Near here on Barrington Street in 1842, Chief Justice 
Sampson Salter Blowers, Boston born Loyalist, died at the 
southwest corner of the street bearing his name in his 100th 
year. He never wore an overcoat. Ex-President John Quincy 
Adams visited him here in 1840, as no doubt did Benedict 
Arnold returning from England back in 1785. (Two of Arnold's 
sons in later years commanded British regiments in Halifax) . 

These business establishments along downtown and up- 
town Halifax were a shambles on V-E Day 1945. Shattered 
plate glass and looted stocks caused losses of a million dollars 
following an invasion of drunken rioters. 

Let us move around towards our starting point so as to 
look down Prince Street, one block south of George. The sturdy 
Carleton Hotel at the corner of Argyle has been standing since 



32 HISTORIC HALIFAX 

1760 when it was erected as an official residence of the Gover- 
nor's Secretary. Heavy stone blocks in its walls came from the 
demolished forts at Louisbourg. See plaque at entrance. 
TPvIRECTLY opposite the Carleton, stood stone house and 
U stables of Dr. W. J. Almon, Loyalist of Newport, R. I. 
(Ever since that period Halifax has had a continuous succes- 
sion of Doctors Almon from the same family). Among the 
antiques of his grandson, Senator Almon, were a walking stick 
and a lock of hair belonging to Major Andre whom George 
Washington hanged as a spy. Of this collection, Lt.Col. W. B. 
Almon still possesses an engraved rapier centuries old, brought 
from France by an exiled Huguenot connected by marriage 
with the famous Faneuil family of Boston. (Some of the 
Faneuils once lived at Halifax and at Windsor, N.S.). 

At 12 Prince Street down the hill, site of "Nova Scotian" 
newspaper in whose columns Editor Joseph Howe thundered 
until Responsible Government was won in this Province in 
1848. Near Prince Street the first telegraph wire strung into 
Halifax exactly a century ago at 187 Hollis Street. First tele- 
phone in same building 1879. At 177 Hollis Street came the 
first transatlantic cable into Halifax 1887. Consequently this 
portion of Hollis Street became, and still remains, the finan- 
cial section of the City. The first agency of the Associated 
Press was set up here in 1849. 

Around this part of old Halifax 150 years ago, armed 
naval patrols known as "press gangs", frequently paraded the 
streets and invaded shops, seizing young men for service in 
His Majesty's navy. There was no redress. 

Drive along those cobbled streets near the waterfront, 
especially towards the south-end wharves where you may see 
fishing trawlers unloading their catches. (Try the flavor of 
our fresh fish at any leading dining places while in Halifax). 

The English atmosphere noticed in this old garrison and 
naval center is a carry-over from the days of the Imperial 
army and navy connections. 

In war and peace the aesthetic side of Halifax continues 
in its religious, its patriotic, and its cultural organizations. 

Now return to your car and drive to whichever points 
appeal to your interests. Information on sight-seeing bus 
trips, or on private guide service, is available at hotel desks, or 
at City Tourist Bureau, telephone 3-7604. (Branch at Bedford) . 

Best wishes for a very pleasant sojourn. Come again. 



BOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY 



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200th ANNIVERSARY 



1749-1949 



HALIFAX 

Founded 1749 

Incorporated - - - - . - 1841 




HALIFAX CORPORATE SEAL 

Translation : 

Halifax, founded A. D. 1749, 

safe in right government; 

presented with the status of 

a City A. D. 1841. 



PRINTED IN CANADA 

MCCURDY PRINT <sgS8£|fac- HALIFAX. CANADA